Keto pesto chicken casserole with feta cheese and olives

Keto pesto chicken casserole with feta cheese and olives

Mediterranean superstars — feta cheese, olives, and pesto — unite in this creamy, easy-to-make keto chicken dish. Whether using low-carb, store-bought or your own home-made pesto, give it a go. Your taste buds — and your family — will thank you!

Keto pesto chicken casserole with feta cheese and olives

Mediterranean superstars — feta cheese, olives, and pesto — unite in this creamy, easy-to-make keto chicken dish. Whether using low-carb, store-bought or your own home-made pesto, give it a go. Your taste buds — and your family — will thank you!
USMetric
4 servingservings

Ingredients

  • 1½ lbs 650 g boneless chicken thighs
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 tbsp 2 tbsp butter or coconut oil
  • 13 cup (2¾ oz.) 80 ml (80 g) red pesto or green pesto
  • 1¼ cups 300 ml heavy whipping cream
  • 3 oz. (23 cup) 85 g (150 ml) pitted olives
  • 5 oz. (1 cup) 140 g (220 ml) feta cheese, diced
  • 1 1 garlic clove, finely choppedgarlic cloves, finely chopped
For serving
  • 5 oz. (2½ cups) 140 g (600 ml) leafy greens
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Instructions

Instructions are for 4 servings. Please modify as needed.

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C).
  2. Cut the chicken into bite-sized pieces. Season with salt and pepper.
  3. Add butter or oil to a large skillet and fry the chicken pieces in batches on medium-high heat until golden brown.
  4. Using store-bought low-carb red or green pesto, or making your own, mix pesto and heavy cream in a bowl.
  5. Place the fried chicken pieces in a baking dish together with olives, feta cheese and garlic. Add the pesto/cream mixture.
  6. Bake in oven for 20-30 minutes, until the dish turns bubbly and light brown around the edges.

Tips

A number of low-carb store-bought varieties of pesto are available in most grocery stores.

Red pesto is typically made with basil leaves, tomatoes or sun-dried tomatoes, Parmesan cheese, olive oil, pine nuts and garlic. Green pesto is typically made with basil leaves, Parmesan cheese, olive oil, pine nuts and garlic. Look for ones with real olive oil, not soybean oil or canola oil, no sugar, and less than 5 net carbs per serving.

A simple side dish of field greens or crunchy romaine lettuce complements the rich flavors. Lightly sautéed asparagus or green beans work, too.

If you feel like making this dish even heartier you can pair it with cauliflower rice, roasted cauliflower or fried broccoli.

Meal prep

This dish can be prepared by frying the chicken ahead of time. You can assemble the entire casserole and keep in the fridge for a day before baking it. Just make sure you let it come to room temperature before placing in the oven. It's also good to give it a stir since the pesto can sink to the bottom.

If you have chicken or turkey leftovers, they are perfect for this dish. Just skip the first 3 steps of the instructions and take it from there. If you're short on time you can also use a rotisserie chicken. Take the meat off the bones and divide it into bite-sized pieces. Follow the instructions from step 3.

Storing and reheating

If you intend to eat the casserole within 2-3 days you can store it in the fridge. Otherwise it's better to place the casserole in the freezer where it will last up to 3 months. Make sure your casserole dish is suitable for freezing.

If freezing, let thaw in the refrigerator the day before you plan on serving it. Don’t place a cold baking dish straight from the fridge into a hot oven as this can cause your dish to crack. Reheat the casserole in the oven at 300°F (150°C) until thoroughly warm.

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💬 Have you tried this recipe?

What did you think? Please share your thoughts in the comment section below!
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453 comments

  1. Louise
    One of my faves, really tasty dish, I like it with rocket/arugula leaves.
  2. Sandy Bachik
    My husband and I have modified this recipe over the years.
    We grill our chicken and broccoli and add a little smoky flavor.
    We also cut up the chicken (after grilled - before baked)
    Baby arugula has been my favorite green to serve it over, so far.
    Mushrooms are good, but they make the dish very watery.
  3. Katherine
    What kind of olives do you suggest?
    Reply: #454
  4. Kristin Parker Team Diet Doctor

    What kind of olives do you suggest?

    If you like the tang and more obvious taste, you can use green olives. If you prefer a more mild taste, you can use black olives. You can use whichever kind you prefer.

  5. Mel-eficent
    Made this last night - left the olives out as didn't have any. Everyone LOVED it - fussy kids and husband included. He actually complimented it which means it is a number one! Served it with cauliflower rice and green veg.
  6. Bunny
    It's delicious and very very saucy. Plan to put it over some roasted veggies and it'll be delish too!
    I'd cook the garlic with the chicken as it didn't soften much at all in the oven. Honestly, the sauce is so good my family is already planning to make pizza and calzones with the leftovers!
  7. Amy
    I wanted to cook this but the total calories scared me off for awhile. I ended up making it with only 45g pesto and 200ml of cream to reduce the calories and it was just devine and still plenty (if not still a little too much) sauce. I had mine over baby spinach and I served it to my family over spinach and ricotta ravioli. They loved it too!
  8. Martha
    This is an amazing recipe. It is very high in calories but with keto-friendly ingredients. I too was intimated initially but went for it. No weight gain! Amazing! I have to say, I made the four serving size because I like cooking once and having more meals and getting more meals out. But here's the thing. I can only eat about 1,300 calories a day, any more or less and I gain weight. So I've already had 4 servings of this but it appears there are about 3-4 more servings in the bowl. So I'll have to actually measure out the finished meal to find the actual calorie and macro count. This is where my fitness pal comes in very handy. Will use it next time. Fabulous meal and it gets better as it mellow in the fridge.
  9. Ketodid
    It would be fantastic if the page loaded properly so half the words were not cut off. Or the print button to work in order to make any of these recipes.
    Reply: #460
  10. Kristin Parker Team Diet Doctor

    It would be fantastic if the page loaded properly so half the words were not cut off. Or the print button to work in order to make any of these recipes.

    I am sorry you are experiencing technical issues with our website. If you need to contact technical support, please visit our Help Center.
    https://dietdoctor.zendesk.com/hc/en-us

  11. Keith
    Very similar to a quick lunch meal I used to make with chicken, red (chilli) pesto, olives and full fat cream cheese.
  12. 4aip48
    I’m not an olive fan, but working on developing a taste for olives. This recipe was delicious use for olives. I added mushrooms, and the sauce was a bit soupy and delicious. Definitely an excellent recipe. Can be hard to find commercially prepared pesto using olive oil, not soybean or seed oils. I buy Mezzetta basil pesto with olive oil when not making my own. Consistently delicious.
  13. Pat
    Good a nd easy to make . I added marinated artichoke hearts and sprinkled parmesan cheese on top. My husband raved that the artichokes just completed this casserole and told me to write the recipe down for future meals. I made it with a bought rotisserie chicken
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